Something wise my father once told me "Something is only worth how much someone is willing to pay for it." This small seemingly unimportant statement has guided me in many selling and purchasing decisions in my life. Sometimes, it makes the reality all too apparent. So, is buying a domain with the intention of selling it a good idea? Let's break down the details, and talk to some people that actively pursue this method. Yeah, we know a guy.
If you are looking to sell a domain name that is no longer of use to you, a possibility would be to lease it through a third-party company such as Godaddy, which lists tens of thousands of names. If the name is a quality one, there are also premium agents such as MediaOptions, which deals with more selective domain names. An alternative option would be to lease it out on platforms such as Nameforest.com. Doing so will save you the time of having to find potential buyers, and will guarantee a higher success rate than attempting to look for a purchaser on your own.
Use escrow services for direct sales. When you are dealing directly with the buyer, make sure that any money that is transferred goes through an escrow service. This will ensure that all checks clear and that you aren't left with a bounced check and no domain. Escrow services may add a few days to a sale and cost you a percentage, but they can save you a lot of heartache.
Think about things like contractor.com or oranges.com. The more generic you go, the better off you will be. Why? Research has shown that Google likes generic names, so any company selling oranges may, for example, want the oranges.com domain name. If you own that name, you can set the asking price for it. Sounds great, right? There arejust a few things you have to think about first.
Domains that are indexed on Google and highly ranked are particularly attractive to traders. Other SEO aspects, such as backlink profiles or the search volume of the keywords in domain names, also play a significant role in appraising value. Design can also positively affect the price of a domain. Short and succinct names that are easy to remember are especially advantageous. Endings are further factors that should be taken into account. Top-level domains (TLDs) such as .com or .org are by far the most sought-after endings.
Your course of action really depends on how much work and effort you can put into the expired domain. If you're barely able to maintain and optimize your current site, you probably want to just 301 redirect the old site (note: see my amended comment above about the link value not likely to be passed). If, however, you're more creative and have some time on your hands, you can try your hand at crafting a microsite. If you really know your stuff and are experienced at making money off various websites, you'd probably do well with the third option.
No, no, no. ToysRUs made a perfectly logical decison that most any business would do and Google tanked them for it. ToysRUs wanted the url toys.com to direct to their site. They're all about toys and they simply bought a url that described their business and told the url where to take people. Google tanked them in the rankings because Toys.com came with link juice. Google assumed that Toys.com was doing this to manipulate the search engines but there is just, to my knowledge, ZERO evidence of this. This is another case of Google caring more about the possible spam threat than the actual rankings for searchers.
The third option is the one that's the most time consuming but also has its benefits. It's like having a successful restaurant and buying another restaurant and operating them simultaneously. They're not the exact same restaurant, but both are popular in their own right and make you money. The same goes for Option #3. You could update the content on the old domain and sell the same products that you're selling on your current site. If you can get both sites to rank alongside each other in the SERPs, you're increasing your conversion chances and sales potential.
While numbers like the ones seen above are impressive, most domains sell for significantly less extravagant prices and are generally in the two or three-digit range. Not long ago, those who were able to secure general terms (like icecream.com or pizza.com) not protected by trademark rights often found themselves sitting on virtual gold mines. The glory days of this boom have long since passed, and those looking for a profit in today’s market need a keen sense for coming trends.
You can still buy two word or three word domain names incorporating your target keywords. Moreover, there are millions of domain names out there which haven’t been used at all and are bound to expire soon. All such domains keep coming back to the domain marketplace. What more, there are useful tools available to research and filter through such expired domains.
Determine your domain's value. Before you start taking offers or listing your domain, take stock of its value so that you can come up with a good price. There are a lot factors to take into consideration when determining the value of a domain, so if you are unsure it may be wise to contact a company that performs these assessments. Some of the major factors include:
Buying domains or registering domains–what’s the difference? There are many ways to acquire a domain. While available domains can be registered with any domain provider, rights of use from already-registered domains have to be purchased from their current owners. You can find different market places and auction platforms online that are tailored to these purposes. This kind of domain trade is...
The dropdate for the following TLDs is not verified. Domains might drop earlier or later: .eu .cat .aero .travel .tel .jobs .ae .at .be .bg .cr .es .fm .gd .gg .gi .gl .gs .gy .hn .ht .hu .id .im .ir .is .je .ke .kg .ky .kz .la .lu .lv .ma .mu .ng .no .om .pe .pf .pm .qa .re .ro .ru .rw .sb .sm .sn .so .st .su .sx .tc .tf .th .tl .to .ug .uy .uz .wf .yt .berlin
The market-driven principles of the domain trade mean that a domain is only worth as much as the buyer is willing to pay. It is for this reason that criteria such as market potential and usability play such central roles in determining prices. Values can change at the drop of a hat. The price of a domain that was once of little interest to anyone in years past can skyrocket once, for example, a newly founded company takes interest in that same name.
But in general, the best and easy way to sell a domain is to go with a marketplace. There is many popular marketplace dedicated to selling domains including Flippa and SellDom to sell your domain (full disclosure, I’m working on SellDom). The advantage is to leverage the popularity of that kinds of services in hope that someone will find your domain and buy/make an offer.
In order to maintain ownership of a domain, you must renew it yearly. If you don’t, it “expires”. An expired domain goes through several stages before being released again for general registration. The process differs slightly from one registrar to another but it’s more or less the same. GoDaddy explains what happens to domains that expire with them here.